Understanding the different types of EOSC Resources

When to use ‘Catalogue’ instead of ‘Data Source’.  The difference between a ‘Resource’ and a ‘Research Product’.

The term ‘resource’ is used in two ways in EOSC:

  • Generically, referring to all the possible types of research service, asset, and collections thereof that can be included in the EOSC Catalogue and Marketplace
  • Specifically, referring to a ‘service’ that accepts input (data), performs processing, and generates one or more outputs (data).

The EOSC Resource Profile is used to describe distinct services using the second meaning above.

Research Products: This is the largest category of EOSC Resources, including documents, articles, datasets, software artefacts, such as source code, compiled software, scripts, workflows, as well as executable items like container or virtual machine images. Each research product is a single item or a tightly integrated item (such as a compressed file containing source code, documentation, etc., an article combined with related data, or a Jupyter Notebook and its included data).

Data Sources: Data sources are EOSC services that host collections of research products. This includes data repositories, software repositories, and publication repositories. To be onboarded, data sources must be at least TRL8 and require EOSC Providers to supply a number of extra fields that are specific to data sources. In order to onboard the related research products, a data source must support automatic ‘harvesting’ of the related metadata descriptions according to the EOSC Interoperability Framework Guidelines for Research Products. Currently, these guidelines require the data source to comply with specific harvesting protocols (OAI-P, FTP, others) and provide metadata compliant with OpenAIRE guidelines for  literature (3.0, 4.0), for data archives, or for CRIS systems.  Note: Data sources that support other services in addition to the harvesting of research products, for example, discipline specific annotation tools, should be onboarded to EOSC as separate EOSC Resources. 

Catalogues: Catalogues are listings of research assets assembled by other groups and communities, e.g., thematic catalogues, regional catalogues.  By onboarding such Catalogues into the EOSC Catalogue and Marketplace, catalogue owners can then use the API to add some or all of their listed assets directly in the EOSC Catalogue and Marketplace.